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Well while I have no doubt that India is doing a lot better as an Independent State than as someone elses colony IIRC there was a Famine in Bihar circa 1966/67?Bogwarrior said:Wiped from history, Catalpa.
Churchill seized/stole all the food supplies from the Bengalis and exported them to his troops who were fighting in Burma.
3-4 million men women and children died in two years.
No different from Germans taking food from the camps and directing it to troops on the Russian Front.
Whilst the Germans are forever apologising for their actions, the average Brit hasn't even heard of this Holocaust, and if they do, they sneer and deride it as insignificant.
The Bengalis unfortunatley don't have people of significance in seats of international power, or media moguls, and are the wrong skin colour.
Pogo denies any wrongdoing, and I'd like to know, what's the difference between Pogo and David Irving?
Interestingly, in the 50 years since the British left _India, there have been no famines, and the population grew by 186%, whereas in the 50 previous years of British Rule it only grew by 35%.
Wikipedia has some info on this, to those interested.
Ok, I'm not 32csm but I'll bite although it's curious that you're not focusing on the worst Indian example of both famine and enforced liberal economics (with a powder keg dash of racism and brutal empire in-a-hot-climate), that of the Famine of the late Vitctorian era where ~30 million died at the hand of Lord lytton's policies - the effect of which was of course well known at that stage.pogo said:Some members of the 32csm appear to take something of an interest in the Bengal famine of the early 1940s, so I decided to up a thread to discuss these events in greater detail.
In 1981, Sen published Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation, a book in which he demonstrated that famine occurs not only from a lack of food, but from inequalities built into mechanisms for distributing food. Sen's interest in famine stemmed from personal experience. As a nine-year-old boy, he witnessed the Bengal famine of 1943, in which three million people perished. This staggering loss of life was unnecessary, Sen later concluded. He believed that there was an adequate food supply in India at the time, but that its distribution was hindered because particular groups of peoplein this case rural labourerslost their jobs and therefore their ability to purchase the food. In his book Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation (1981), Sen revealed that in many cases of famine, food supplies were not significantly reduced. In Bengal, for example, food production whilst down on the previous year was higher than in previous non-famine years. Thus, Sen points to a number of social and economic factors, such as declining wages, unemployment, rising food prices, and poor food-distribution systems. These issues led to starvation among certain groups in society. His capabilities approach focuses on positive freedom, a person's actual ability to be or do something, rather than on negative freedom approaches, which are common in economics and simply focuses on non-interference. In the Bengal famine, rural laborers' negative freedom to buy food was not affected. However, they still starved because they were not positively free to do anything, they did not have the functioning of nourishment, nor the capability to escape morbidity.
Then and Now: British Imperial Policy Means FamineAs B.M. Bhatia writes in his 1967 book, Famines in India: "From about the beginning of the eleventh century to the end of the eighteenth there were 14 major famines in India." This is roughly two per century. Under the period of East India Company rule from 1765-1858 there occurred 16 major famines, a rate eight times higher than what had been common before. Then, under the period of British Colonial Office rule from 1859 to 1914, there was a major famine in India an average of every two years, or 25 times the historical rate before British rule! The rest of the world's population was growing due to technological progress, but the population of India remained at approximately 220 million for over a century prior to 1914.
Deliberately inducing a major famine more or less every two years, was, for over half a century, the backbone of British colonial policy in India.
The history of the British in India is a history of the deliberate creation of famines. Such famines resulted from the policies of the East India Company. Those policies included looting through "tax farming," usury, and outright slavery of the indigenous population.
As we shall see, a limit to this rapine was reached in the middle of the 19th Century, leading to the first struggle for Indian independence, which began with the Sepoy Mutiny. Following that revolt, a new policy was developed by the British Colonial Office, which took over all the operations of the East India Company. The new policy revolved around creating famines in selected regions on a continuous basis, with the goal of creating a mass of starving people who could be used as slave labor, needed by the British to build the infrastructure of British rule.
Amartya Sen holds the view that there was no overall shortage of rice in Bengal in 1943: availability was actually slightly higher than in 1941, when there was no famine. It was partly this which conditioned the sluggish official response to the disaster, as there had been no serious crop failures and hence the famine was unexpected. Its root causes, Sen argues, lay in rumours of shortage which caused hoarding, and rapid price inflation caused by war-time demands which made rice stocks an excellent investment (prices had already doubled over the previous year). In Sen's interpretation, while landowning peasants who actually grew rice and those employed in defence-related industries in urban areas and at the docks saw their wages rise, this led to a disastrous shift in the exchange entitlements of groups such as landless labourers, fishermen, barbers, paddy huskers and other groups who found the real value of their wages had been slashed by two-thirds since 1940. Quite simply, although Bengal had enough rice and other grains to feed itself, millions of people were suddenly too poor to buy it.